What Is a Mesothelioma Claim?
A mesothelioma claim is a legal action to pursue compensation from manufacturers of asbestos-containing products.
These manufacturers realized the dangers of their products in the early 1930s but hid the truth to continue making profits. When the general public discovered that asbestos caused deadly diseases by the early 1980s, thousands of people filed legal claims against these manufacturers.
Video Summary: Dennis, a victim of mesothelioma, talks about his journey from diagnosis to filing an asbestos claim. View Transcript.
The specialist called me one night at 5:30 and I thought, “this is odd time for them to be calling me.”
He said, “Dennis, I have the results for your test.”
And my reaction was, “Oh, good. What do you got?”
He didn’t speak for like five or seven seconds and I thought, “Oh my god, this is it.”
And he said, “The results from the biopsy are you have mesothelioma, you’ve been around asbestos.”
They determined I had peritoneal mesothelioma, that means it’s mostly in my stomach.
I asked her, “How long am I going to live, doctor?”
She told me, “I see five to ten years and I will hope for ten to fifteen.”
So I thought, “Oh my god, I just lose my dad three months earlier, now I got cancer.”
I had fun being a mechanic. The dust from brake jobs, yeah there’s a lot, especially in the hub of the wheel; got to get all the dust away so you can put in the new stuff.
I knew there was asbestos in it but I didn’t know it was harmful. I didn’t know it would cause cancer.
Do I call the attorneys? I didn’t know I would get these benefits. It’s helped complete our – make our living financially, we would have been in Hell in high water without these benefits.
I had a legal team on my side in two or three days I believe, and I was very comfortable.
They were real people and they came to my house. They treated me like a person, not a number. They took care of every step and they explained to me the steps that would be taken and as time went on, they needed to they would call me on the phone and let me know and it was a good experience.
If someone was diagnosed with mesothelioma, as I was. I would tell them, first of all, you need help like I did. We were given something we were never warned about, that asbestos was in the things we worked with.
They made it very personal for me in a good way. For my wife, and kids and my family, they really helped me and they treated me like a person.
Compensation from a mesothelioma claim can cover medical costs and other related expenses.
These expenses include:
- Lost wages if the victim can no longer work
- Travel costs
Mesothelioma claims also force manufacturers to take responsibility for their actions that affected millions of people over several decades.
Roughly 27 million workers were exposed to asbestos from 1940 to 1979, according to the Agency for Toxic Substances & Disease Registry (ATSDR).
If you or a loved one developed mesothelioma, you may qualify for compensation from an asbestos trust fund. Find out if you are eligible today.
Types of Mesothelioma Claims
There are several types of mesothelioma claims to consider based on your specific case. Your lawyer can help determine which type of claim to file.
Learn more about the types of asbestos exposure claims below.
Personal Injury Claims
Victims of mesothelioma can file a personal injury claim. Your claim must prove that the asbestos-containing products made by the manufacturers caused your illness.
Your personal injury mesothelioma claim must include:
- A medical diagnosis of mesothelioma
- A doctor’s written statement linking your diagnosis to asbestos exposure
- Work history (if you worked at a company that used asbestos-containing products)
- Product history (if you used a product that contained asbestos)
Once your personal injury claim has been submitted, your mesothelioma lawsuit will begin. Your lawyer will work to get compensation from manufacturers by building a strong case to reach an out-of-court settlement or an in-court trial verdict.
Money from personal injury claims may cover the costs of medical treatments and other expenses, such as the emotional toll brought by a mesothelioma diagnosis.
Wrongful Death Claims
If your loved one has passed from their battle with mesothelioma or another asbestos-related disease, you may be able to file a wrongful death claim.
A mesothelioma wrongful death claim aims to hold major manufacturers of asbestos-containing products accountable for the victim’s death.
Wrongful death lawsuits filed for late mesothelioma victims can help families pay off the victim’s past medical bills and other related expenses, such as funeral costs and emotional damages.
Asbestos Trust Fund Claims
If you were exposed to asbestos-containing materials and developed mesothelioma, you may be eligible to file an asbestos trust fund claim.
Asbestos companies could not keep up with the number of lawsuits being filed against them, so they declared bankruptcy and established asbestos bankruptcy trusts. This prevented them from facing more asbestos-related lawsuits while paying out victims exposed to their products.
Today, there is an estimated $30 billion available in asbestos trust funds. Work with an experienced mesothelioma lawyer to ensure your asbestos trust fund claim is filed correctly and in a timely manner.
Mesothelioma Claim Amounts
The amount of money awarded from a mesothelioma claim can vary depending on your specific case and which type of claim is filed.
Here is a breakdown of mesothelioma claim amounts by type:
- Asbestos trust fund claims: These claims typically award around $180,000 to mesothelioma victims, according to the RAND Institute of Civil Justice. However, trusts also need to keep funds available to pay future claimants, so they may only be able to pay a percentage of what they actually owe to current claimants.
- Mesothelioma settlements: The average mesothelioma settlement awards around $1 million. Mesothelioma settlement amounts can vary depending on your case. Around 95% of mesothelioma claims will result in a settlement.
- Mesothelioma trial verdicts: Trial verdicts amounts can depend on whether the court finds the manufacturers of asbestos-based products responsible for your disease. If the court rules in your favor, you may be able to win millions of dollars. However, you may not win any money at all if they do not rule in your favor.
It is important to note that claim amounts can vary. You may receive more or less compensation from your case. Contact a top mesothelioma lawyer to learn more about your potential claim value.
How to File an Asbestos Claim
For best results, you need to work with a skilled lawyer to file an asbestos claim. Your mesothelioma lawyer will help you during the entire legal process to build and strengthen your claim.
The mesothelioma claims process generally follows these three steps:
- Gather evidence: This evidence may include medical records and work history to show how asbestos exposure caused the victim to develop mesothelioma.
- Determine manufacturers responsible: Successful claims trace mesothelioma back to the manufacturers of asbestos-containing products. For example, the victim may have worked for one of these companies or used the asbestos-based products they made.
- File the claim: Mesothelioma compensation claims can be filed if the companies in question are still in business or if they established asbestos trust funds.
Without the help of a skilled law firm, simple mistakes in the filing process can derail your claim and delay payment.
Statute of Limitations on Mesothelioma Claims
It is important to make sure you file your mesothelioma claim within your state’s statute of limitations. This law places a time limit on how long you have to file an asbestos claim.
Statutes of limitations vary by state, with most limiting mesothelioma claims to 2-3 years after mesothelioma, asbestosis, lung cancer, or another asbestos-related disease diagnosis. You will not be able to file your claim if the statute of limitations passes.
Work with an experienced mesothelioma attorney to file your claim within the deadline, as statutes of limitations can vary significantly with each case due to different laws and other factors. For example, if you were exposed to asbestos in one state but now live in another, you may need to file your claim within the first state’s statute of limitations.
Asbestos lawyers can help you and your family navigate the laws in your state. If the statute of limitations has expired, you should still contact a lawyer to see what legal options are still available.
Mesothelioma Insurance Claims and Other Benefits
There are other ways to receive compensation for mesothelioma besides legal claims. Mesothelioma patients may be able to file several different types of insurance claims or collect benefits from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA).
Learn more about other types of asbestos claims and benefits below.
Those with mesothelioma often qualify for insurance payouts since this type of cancer requires intensive and costly medical treatment.
Types of mesothelioma insurance claims include:
- Medicare and Medicaid: These government-run insurance programs cover the health care expenses for seniors and people with low household incomes. These programs may or may not cover all the expenses associated with mesothelioma.
- Private insurance: Over 67% of the U.S. population had private health insurance as of 2018, according to the Census Bureau. Mesothelioma victims should see what their policy covers to determine how much money they will need to pay out of pocket.
- Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI): This government-sponsored form of insurance is available to those under the age of 65, provided they have worked long enough to qualify.
Though not every expense may be covered, these insurance programs can provide compensation to help victims afford mesothelioma treatment and cover other medical expenses.
Workers’ compensation is a type of insurance for employees that are injured on the job. Workers who were exposed to asbestos while at work and developed mesothelioma may be able to file a workers’ compensation claim.
However, this type of claim can actually limit the compensation a victim may receive from a settlement or a trial verdict through liens. Liens allow the insurers who fund workers’ compensation to get a cut of any money awarded through legal action.
To learn more about workers’ compensation claims and how it affects other forms of compensation you may receive, consult with a mesothelioma lawyer.
The U.S. military used many asbestos-containing products without knowing their dangers from the 1930s to the early 1980s. Veterans who developed mesothelioma from asbestos exposure during their military service can file for VA benefits.
VA benefits include:
- Disability compensation
- Medical care from VA-affiliated mesothelioma experts
- Survivor benefits for spouses and loved ones
- Extra compensation to afford in-home care and other health needs
Applying for VA benefits can be challenging and time-consuming, but mesothelioma lawyers can help you gather the right information to file a claim.
File Your Mesothelioma Claim Today
The manufacturers of asbestos-containing products knew they were putting hardworking people like you in harm’s way. Sadly, they continued to make and sell their goods for decades without disclosing the health risks.
These companies should be held responsible for their actions and pay for medical treatment and other expenses if you developed mesothelioma from their products.
Filing an asbestos claim can help you get the financial compensation you deserve and need to cover medical bills and other expenses. By winning money from a mesothelioma claim, you can rest assured knowing you and your family will be financially secure in the future.
Get a free legal consultation today to see if you qualify to file a mesothelioma claim.
Mesothelioma Claims FAQs
Who can file a mesothelioma claim?
Anyone who has been diagnosed with mesothelioma can file a claim. Because asbestos is the only known cause of mesothelioma, your claim must prove that your condition was caused by asbestos exposure.
Can families file mesothelioma claims after the death of a loved one?
Yes. Loved ones of a mesothelioma victim can file an asbestos claim after their death. Contact a lawyer to see how long you have to file your wrongful death claim.
Who pays a mesothelioma compensation claim?
The asbestos manufacturers will pay you in a mesothelioma claim. Whether you are filing a personal injury, wrongful death, or asbestos trust fund claim, your claim will ask for compensation from the makers of the asbestos-containing products you were exposed to.
How long does a mesothelioma claim take for you to receive compensation?
It depends on the type of claim. For example, you can start to receive compensation within 90 days or less from a mesothelioma claim. This process can vary with each manufacturer of asbestos-containing products that you filed against.
A lawyer can give you a better estimate as to how long your mesothelioma claim will take as the legal process moves forward.
Do I need a lawyer to file a mesothelioma claim?
Yes. The expertise of a skilled mesothelioma lawyer can ensure your asbestos claim is filed correctly in the right amount of time. A lawyer can build and strengthen your case to help you get the most amount of compensation possible.
Get a free case review today to see if you are able to file a mesothelioma claim.